With the industry still reeling from the recent The New York Times expose, in which fifteen current and retired male models and thirteen male assistants accused photographers Mario Testino and Bruce Weber of sexual misconduct and abuse, the bad news keep coming. Today The Business of Fashion reported their own investigation into Weber, which found more former male models claiming the photographer acted inappropriately. Writer Hayley Phelan talked with former male models D.L Janney, Christopher Cates, Alex Geerman, and Ryan Vigilant, who all recounted uncomfortable experiences working with Weber.
Vigilant said the photographer touched him in a sexual manner during a shoot in 2008. He initially passed on revealing Weber’s name for the piece, but changed his mind after reading the article in The Times. “The statements that Bruce and Mario, or should I say their lawyers, made, pains me,” he wrote via email to BOF. “I don’t understand their denial. Either their sense of entitlement has so clouded their ethical judgement, it’s not based in reality anymore. Or they are going through so much pain internally and are destroying themselves.”
Weber and Testino have both vehmently denied all claims. Weber is also facing a lawsuit filed on December 1st by model Jason Boyce for sexual misconduct. Since The Times piece came out, Condé Nast has cut ties with both photographers for the foreseeable future. If social media is any indication, it seems Weber is trying to get life back to normal. Yesterday he returned to Instagram where he posted an image of one of his dogs with stuffed animals, and today he posted vintage images of Naomi Campbell and Eva Herzigova. Users are still allowed to comment, but all negative comments seem to have been deleted.
Testino’s social media activity hasn’t been updated in 5 days. His account is flooded with #timesup comments from users.